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April 5, 2010

The return of the Evil Arch Nemesis!

It's been quite some time since I had an Evil Arch Nemesis, probably over a year. I prefer being my own worst enemy, it seems, or perhaps I am boring and forgetful about enemies. I did have an Evil Enemy about a year or so ago but the hateful disliking was mostly on her part and I sort of forgot all about it until I saw her one day walking on a sidewalk in downtown and I smiled and said hey and she brushed past me with an icy chill.

I thought, "That was weird! She must not have seen me!" and then I remembered we are Sworn Enemies For Life or Longer and she was still carrying that grudge even though I had long forgotten about her. It made me laugh.

This time, though, I have a real ambitious Evil Arch Nemesis (and of course it's a she, why are my adversaries always cranky, panties-in-a-bunch women?) and she will one day make a fabulous fictional character, the foe to our heroine's main character.

It's good to get an Evil Arch Nemesis every now and again. It provides endless entertainment during happy hour with the girls and it brings out my more ebullient list of adjectives.

Now I am fully aware that there is a whole faction of the population who are as we speak stepping upon a soapbox filled with moral suds and getting elevated enough to climb up on top of a high, high horse to inform me that there should be no enemies, no grudges, no smack talking over happy hour. Those folks say it's always best to turn the other cheek, and I know that is absolutely the right choice for so many people.

However, I am from a part of the country where people are still re-enacting the Civil war and they plan to keep on re-enacting until it ends the way THEY want it to end. Talk about your elongated revenge fantasy. They put on homemade uniforms, carry real muskets and set up whole battlefield kitchens with corn pone and whiskey or something like that.

What I am saying here is that I am not from people who turn the other cheek. I am from the sort of stock that goes out of their way to dramatize an event and re-tell it for centuries to come and it includes special clothes for goodness sakes.

The very best part about having an Evil Arch Nemesis is that it brings out your creativity, largely in the realm of the Revenge Fantasy. I learned a lot from my expensive and drawn-out divorce and one of those lessons was to embrace the Revenge Fantasy. It's perfectly healthy and probably better for you than acting out in real life, unless you like incarceration, which I do not.

When you're deep in the midst of creating a revenge fantasy you're concentrating on every detail -- what you're wearing, what your hair looks like, which shoes go with your perfect-self-outfit, where you cross paths with Sworn Evil Enemy, what the other person says, what you say -- rewind, say it again, this time zingier! and so on.

It's impossible to feel sad or depressed or defeated or deflated or frustrated or hopeless when you are deep in a revenge fantasy. And that is a good thing! I know I personally always feel better about life after I spend an hour in crawling traffic having a very detailed revenge fantasy in which my sworn evil enemy is left in the dust and I am living in a pied-à-terre in Paris. In the end I am always wearing something fantastic and the nasty enemy is sour-faced and wearing bad shoes and fades out pitifully and sometimes there is George Clooney asking me to dinner. Not sure how he sneaks in there.

And what would life be anyway if you didn't have someone pop into your experience every now and then to crystallize so purely all the things you yourself never want to be? My Evil Arch Nemesis is all the stuff I definitely don't want to be in my life. So I like to see my Evil Arch Nemesis for what it is, something irritating that I can use to tell a funny story about and hopefully vanquish with George on my arm. And like all my sworn enemies she will one day be forgotten and truly, that is the very best revenge of all.

Posted by laurie at April 5, 2010 7:00 AM